SCORES of suspected Zanu PF supporters and war veterans on Saturday besieged Shamrock Farm in Beatrice, Mashonaland East province, belonging to an MDC-T official Silent Dube and abducted him before dumping him at a nearby army barrack.
REPORT BY MOSES MATENGA
The police were called in to disperse the rogue crowd suspected to have been predominantly from Harare that came in a convoy of about 30 vehicles and estimated at over 200 people.
When NewsDay visited the farm yesterday, scores of people in Zanu PF regalia, were still milling around Beatrice Police Station while Dube had returned to his farm with police officers manning the premises.
Dube, a former army officer, said he got the farm legally in 2004 and related well with senior Zanu PF officials in the province despite his political affiliation.
“I was handcuffed and beaten up. I asked these people why they were tarnishing the image of the President (Robert Mugabe). I told them that my presence on the farm should be a good thing for Zanu PF to say the land reform programme was not a Zanu PF thing,” Dube said showing off his bruised hands and swollen face.
“I was relaxing with my visitor when I saw several vehicles, almost 30 of them and I realised trouble had started. They said they had come to take my farm and I should leave immediately. They ordered me to get my belongings out.”
Dube said the war veterans said he should not have benefited from a Zanu PF land reform programme. “They took away MDC-T posters and my personal documents including passport,” he said.
The former army investigating officer said that he lost in the MDC-T primary elections to represent his party in Mhondoro-Mubaira. He was the constituency representative for the Joint Implementation and Monitoring Committee (Jomic).
He said that people in Mashonaland East were at peace, but accused those from Harare of destabilising the farming community.
“They also wanted to take over a white man’s farm here, but I think they will not continue, thanks to the local police who stopped them. The late Solomon Mujuru used to stand up against these acts because he respected people and peace,” Dube said.
In a related matter, Manyame Rural District Council (MRDC) yesterday warned villagers against illegal grabbing and allocation of land saying anyone caught doing so would be arrested. MRDC said villagers should desist from allocating or acquiring land outside what is stipulated by the Communal Lands Act.
“Council officials and the Zimbabwe Republic Police officers will patrol all villages on a daily basis and anyone who is found building or making any developments on any piece of land will be arrested. Concerned villagers are also encouraged to report anyone found pegging, occupying or building on any communal land without a valid permit,” the rural district council said.